An increased number of trespassers during off hours has forced Warzecha to plan the installation of security cameras on the property, which is operated and maintained by the Catholic Diocese of Victoria.
“Things have gotten out of hand lately,” Warzecha said. “The incidents lately are not only by juveniles, but by adults coming onto the grounds and having parties. They’ve even posted some of their photos on the Internet.”
The facility rents out quarters for overnight visitors. Warzecha said some visitors have feared for their safety at night when trespassers have scaled the walls of the presidio.
“We had a travel writer spend the night here to write a story about Presidio La Bahia and the quarters, which would have been good publicity for us and Goliad,” Warzecha said. “At 1 a.m., all hell broke loose and someone was beating on the doors of the quarters trying to get in. It scared this lady and her husband to death.”
Warzecha said the couple called 9-1-1 and the Goliad County Sheriff’s Office arrived at the scene to find a woman with her son and two other youngsters inside the facility.
Warzecha said beer cans and other trash has been found on the grounds.
“At the Alamo, if you’re caught on the grounds at night, you’re prosecuted big-time,” Warzecha said. “We haven’t been real successful in getting that done here.
“You don’t get away with this at other historic places in Texas. We’re not being respected and we have to do something about it.”
Warzecha said if trespassers are identified by the security cameras and caught, they will be prosecuted to the full extent of the law.
“This place has three-foot-thick walls, eight to 10 feet high,” Warzecha said. “That’s a good sign you shouldn’t be in here. If we wanted them in here, we would leave the gate open.”